The Noramoji Project is one of the greatest undertakings that I've come across. Noramoji are fonts made from the deconstruction of storefront signage found all over Japan. These fonts can't be found in books or type kits, they have to be sought out.
The goal of Noramoji is to find these fonts, deconstruct and analyze the fonts in order to recreate a full set of hiragana or katakana and then returning the letters back to the store owners. You can actually download these fonts and donate to fund their ongoing project. The proceeds are then given back to the store owners that the fonts were found from.
What a great idea!